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Students of Tokyo Tech High School of Science and Technology win company-sponsored architecture contest

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Published: May 2, 2022

Architectural Design students of Tokyo Tech High School of Science and Technology (Tokyo Tech High School) scored a double victory at Passionate & Advanced Mission-E: Space Architecture Project, an engineering contest held on March 27 and sponsored by Nippon Steel Engineering Co., Ltd. The team secured both overall victory and the technical award at the event.

Winning team and their creation

Winning team and their creation

Passionate & Advanced Mission-E

Passionate & Advanced Mission-E is a next-generation development project sponsored by Nittetsu Engineering Co., Ltd. The program is designed to provide middle and high school students with the experience of solving problems independently using engineering methods while learning the required knowledge and approaches to take on challenges from engineers currently active in the field. The project currently includes the Energy Island Project, the Space Architecture Project, and the Ecology Plant Project.

The Space Architecture Project: Build the 2030 Winter Olympics stadium

The theme of this year's Space Architecture Project was the creation of the Winter Olympics stadium for 2030. A total of five school teams joined the contest, attempting to design a spatially enormous building that utilizes a three-dimensional truss. They were also asked to produce a 1/100 scale structural model.

This project kicked off in July 2021, when contest participants were appointed during a ceremony, but various restrictions due to COVID-19 hampered activities for the next eight months. Engineers' school visits were moved online, and the midterm project event in November was scaled back. During this period, however, the students of Tokyo Tech High School continued to work on the stadium design while receiving advice from a number of Nittetsu Engineering employees who are also Tokyo Tech alumni.

Team preparing their winning concept at school
Team preparing their winning concept at school

Creating prototypes through trial and error
Creating prototypes through trial and error

During the finals, teams had to present not only their Olympic stadium design, but also participate in load testing using their large structural model, which was built together with other Architectural Design students who were not members of the team. Tokyo Tech High School did not win the presentation award, but they won the technical award for outstanding cost performance, meaning load capacity in relation to materials costs, and they took overall first place for their combined presentation, load capacity, and cost performance efforts.

Winning team giving presentation
Winning team giving presentation

Slide explaining features of winning design
Slide explaining features of winning design

Structural model load test
Structural model load test

Team members receiving their award
Team members receiving their award

Tokyo Tech High School, which is the only national high school of science and technology in Japan, promotes cooperative learning with Tokyo Tech and focuses on early education in specialized fields of science and engineering. The high school team’s presentation, structural design, and ingenuity during construction were all highly evaluated during this competition, not only by judges but also by students from other schools. As a result of the unique characteristics and continued support for one another within the broader Tokyo Tech community, the students of Tokyo Tech High School produced another one-of-a-kind creation that earned them this victory.

Team Takebayashi – Contest winners

Winning team with Nippon Steel Engineering Co., Ltd. Representative Director and President Yukito Ishiwa (back, center) and judges
Winning team with Nippon Steel Engineering Co., Ltd. Representative Director and President Yukito Ishiwa (back, center) and judges

  • Yuma Takebayashi, 3rd year, Architectural Design
  • Ukyo Ayabe, 3rd year, Architectural Design
  • Ryusuke Tomabechi, 3rd year, Architectural Design
  • Takeru Mukai, 3rd year, Architectural Design
  • Kai Uchiyama, 3rd year, Architectural Design

Supporting high school teachers

  • Kaori Mogami, Architecture and Design
  • Kensuke Kobayashi, Architecture and Design

Comments from winning team members

Yuma Takebayashi
3rd year, Architectural Design

In this contest to create a dome, we had the valuable experience of doing everything from design to production by ourselves. So far in our architectural design studies, we have learned about structures, structural design, and planning, and I think we were able to win this contest by utilizing what we have learned so far.

Ukyo Ayabe
3rd year, Architectural Design

I am used to learning about the characteristics of structures, and calculation and analysis methods, through classes and lectures. With this project, I was able to experience the real thing and make use of these skills in design and creation. It was also a valuable experience to interact with company employees who are actually doing the work.

Ryusuke Tomabechi
3rd year, Architectural Design

Each person has their strengths and weaknesses, and this project to create a dome clarified this. We were able to achieve this result by combining our strengths. I would like to make use of this experience in my research projects and create something even better in the future.

Takeru Mukai
3rd year, Architectural Design

It took some time for opinions to come together in a competition with many team members, but I think each of us complemented the strengths of one another, and that led to this result. Activities were restricted in the past eight months, so I think this was a valuable experience. I would like to make use of this experience for future research projects.

Kai Uchiyama
3rd year, Architectural Design

We were able to learn firsthand about the difficulties and pleasures of construction by sharing our knowledge to create a stronger dome, and experimenting and investigating every time we had a problem. It was also a good opportunity for us to utilize the knowledge we are acquiring through our architecture studies and equipment such as laser processing machines, which are not usually available at other schools.

Contact

Architectural Design, Tokyo Tech High School of Science and Technology

Email smd-admin@hst.titech.ac.jp

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